• Football player speaks for 1st time about accident that burned most of his body

    By: Audrey Washington

    Updated:

    A Georgia high school football player is thankful for his successful road to recovery after a freak accident burned most of his body. 

    If it wasn’t for the wheelchair and bandages on his arms and legs, you would never know what Mayson McKinzie went through three months ago. 

    McKinzie burned more than 90 percent of his body when a can of gasoline exploded near his family's home as he was burning debris in his Bremen backyard. 

    “When I poured it, the flames went back into the gas can and blew up on me,” he told Channel 2's Audrey Washington.

    McKinzie said he dropped to the ground and rolled. His mother, Ginger McKinzie, is a nurse and wasted no time helping put the flames out. 

    “It’s a big feeling when you see your child on fire and that was probably the scariest moment of my life,” she said.


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    Paramedics rushed McKinzie to Grady Memorial Hospital. Doctors weren’t sure if he would survive, but his mother thought otherwise. 

    “I never felt that emptiness inside that I was going to lose my son," Ginger McKinzie said.

    Washington met with Mayson and Ginger McKinzie as the teen prepared to leave Grady Memorial Hospital burn unit. 

    With support from his community, McKinzie made it through all of the surgeries and skin graft procedures. He is now building up his strength and will head to a rehab facility. 

    "It’s been feeling great to be moving again and active," he said.

    At the rehab center, McKinzie will learn how to walk again. But he doesn’t want to stop there. 

    “I’m going to fight for everything and I’m going to be back on the field playing football," McKinzie said.

    A GoFundMe account has been set up for the family and has reached almost $25,000 of its $35,000 goal.

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